Chennai: With his classy square cuts and wristy drives, he charmed a legion of fans in his heyday, but now Gundappa Viswanath is in awe of a teenager — Prithvi Shaw. Viswanath said the Mumbai opener’s stroke-making has an air of authority. “Even though it’s early days for him in Test cricket and the debut hundred came against a depleted West Indies, Prithvi has shown that he’s very promising. It’s good to see him playing his shots, without curbing his instincts. I have been seeing him for a while, a few of his Ranji innings and Duleep knocks. His approach hasn’t hanged in Test cricket. He played similar strokes in domestic cricket. It shows his ability,” said Viswanath.
Prithvi has drawn comparisons with the likes of Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag after his sensational debut, but the 69-year-old said it wasn’t good to draw parallels. “I will never compare any two cricketers. I believe each cricketer is unique,” he said.
Viswanath doesn’t see any reason why Prithvi can’t excel in overseas conditions. “No one knows how he is going to do in foreign conditions; you have to see him play there to analyse. But I would say, he has got the right temperament. He has got runs in Ranji, Duleep and for India. That means he has got talent,” he said.
Viswanath said Virat Kohli has proved himself as one of the greatest batsmen, but not as a captain yet. “He is doing really well, but he is yet to prove that he’s the best. He has to win a series abroad. He has come closer, a couple of times, but still he hasn’t done yet. As a batsman, he has proved in all conditions. In the recent England tour, he showed us how good can he be. There are more expectations from Kohli the captain. He is still young as a leader. But I am confident he will reach that stage one day,” he said adding that Sunil Gavaskar is still the benchmark for batting in Test cricket.